Last flu season nationwide 960,000 people were hospitalized with the flu and 79,000 died

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO: JAMES GATHANY, CENTERS FOR DISEASECONTROL AND PREVENTION - More than 950,000 people were hospitalized with the flu last year. A flu shot is the most effective way to prevent the illness. Haven't gotten around to getting that flu shot? Legacy Mount Hood Medical Center can help you out. The hospital is giving free flu shots during the month of November.

Anyone aged 6 months or older can get a free flu vaccination at Mount Hood and other Legacy hospitals this month. No insurance is required. Anyone younger than 15 must have a guardian present.

The shots will be given at Legacy Mount Hood, 24800 S.E. Stark St., from 4-8 p.m. on Wednesdays and Fridays in the main hospital lobby. On Saturday, people can get a vaccination from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the main lobby.

The flu can be a very serious illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 23 million people visited the doctor because of the flu in the 2017-18 flu season, 960,000 were hospitalized and 79,000 died.

The vaccination clinics will be staffed by a Legacy Health registered nurse with training in immunization and epidemiology. Anyone in the community is welcome including family members of Legacy staff and people visiting patients.

There are high dose shots available for those 65 years old and older and egg-free shots for those18 years old and older with allergies to eggs. There are also latex-free and preservative-free options.

The is no fee and donations are not accepted.

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